Burnout is a very real concern for any CPA. Long hours and the stress of tax season can lead to health and wellness issues, loss of sleep, strained personal relationships and other negative consequences. If you have reached the point in your career when you are tired of constant travel, the lack of a community, and the difficulty of juggling a large client load, it might be time to consider making the switch to the private side.

The Private Work Environment

In public accounting, billable hours run the show, which means 40-hour workweeks are the exception rather than the rule. Public accountants work with a variety of organizations, which can be spread out across the state or even across the company. Conversely, private accountants are typically assigned one client, which means travel is usually minimal and a standard nine-to-five workday is much more common.

The Skills and Development Factor

Since public accountants work with many clients, they are subject to a variety of work environments and fall into the “generalist” category, meaning they must know a little about a lot of subjects, and they may work with clients in several different industries. Private accountants have the benefit of focusing on a single area of specialty, which provides a clearer path for skill development and career growth. Accountants that enjoy a specific area of the field or who enjoy working in a single industry can immerse themselves in that specialty through private firms.

A Home Base and Team Support

Traveling as a public accountant means having a lack of “roots.” You don’t have a core team that you work with each day to solve problems, to bounce ideas off of or to simply blow off steam with. On the private side, you come to work each day and work alongside the same people. You have a core support team you can rely on, and a defined structure to work within.

Private Accounting Job Outlook

According to the 2016 Accounting and Finance Salary Guide, the hiring outlook for private accounting is strong. An ever-increasing tax, regulatory and compliance burden on US companies has created high demand for CPAs. Salaries are typically higher in private accounting, and as companies struggle to keep up with the market, many firms are offering strong benefits packages that include healthcare, bonuses, stock options and pensions, even as other sectors are cutting back on benefits.

Are You Ready to Make the Switch?

If you are ready to learn more about making the shift from public accounting to private accounting, the finance team at Systems Personnel in Western New York can match you with new opportunities to grow your accounting career. We go the extra mile to determine a strong fit because we want our candidates to thrive on the job, and we will match you with an organization that will help you achieve your goals. Contact us today to learn more about the ways we can help you take your accounting career to the next level.

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